Four Changes to Social Security in 2018

Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) May 17, 2018 - While Congress did not make as many changes to Social Security guidelines as it did to the IRS Tax Code, there are still some noticeable differences in Social Security in 2018. Read on to learn what is new and changing, to plan accordingly.

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Increase in full retirement age (FRA)

While Americans can claim Social Security benefits at age 62, the age at which a person may claim full benefits without a monthly reduction has changed. The FRA is shifting from 66 for people born in 1954 and earlier to 67 for people born in 1960 or later.

Higher cost-of-living adjustment (COLA)

Social security recipients will enjoy an automatic increase in their benefits in 2018. While the increase is only two percent, that amount is the largest uptick given recipients in six years. Unfortunately, however, many seniors may not actually receive the increase in benefits because premiums have also been raised for Medicare Part B.

Higher earnings limits

Even when a person claims Social Security before reaching FRA, they are still permitted to work and receive income up to a specified amount without reducing the amount of benefits they receive. In 2018, the most income a Social Security recipient can earn without impacting their benefits is $17,040. If they earn more than that, their retirement benefits are reduced by $1 for every additional $2 earned.

However, the rules change for the year a person reaches their FRA. If, for example, the FRA is attained during 2018, the earnings limit is $3,780 per month for all months prior to reaching the FRA. Income above that threshold is reduced by $1 for every additional $3 earned.

Moving online

The Social Security Administration is storing more information online, spelling the end of paper statements showing past annual earnings and estimated benefits. That means most workers stopped receiving paper statements at the start of 2018. However, people over the age of 60 who are not receiving Social Security benefits will continue to receive paper statements, but that is only if they have not registered online for a "My Social Security" account. People with a "My Social Security" account may check their earnings statements and review estimated benefits online at any time, regardless of their age.

“The social security system is governed by a complicated set of laws that change often. Because people’s very lives often depend on their social security benefits, it is wise to stay informed about those changes,” says David W. Magann, a social security disability attorney in Brandon, Florida.

David W. Magann, P.A.
Main Office:
156 W. Robertson St.
Brandon, FL 33511
Call: (813) 657-9175

Tampa Office:
4012 Gunn Highway #165
Tampa, Florida 33618

David W. Magann, P.A.
Main Office:
156 W. Robertson St.
Brandon, FL 33511
Call: (813) 657-9175

Tampa Office:
4012 Gunn Highway #165
Tampa, Florida 33618

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